Exercise is good for you- everybody knows that. But, exercise is also great for our brain- it promotes new brain cells growth, helps us concentrate, cuts down chances of developing dementia by 50%, and helps us fight a slew of conditions from ADHD to addiction. A combination of aerobic exercise in form of jogging or walking (as little as 30 min of jogging 2 or 3 times a week is enough to stay sharp) with an activity that’s demanding in terms of complex motor skills movements like yoga, ballet, or gymnastics is ideal for keeping our brain cells in good shape. Activities like tennis and squash are best, as they combine both the aerobic and the complex workouts.
If you don’t play tennis, a ten minute aerobic warm-up before a non-aerobic and skills based activity three times a week is probably enough to keep the brain cells in good order.
Ratey provides ample examples and case studies on positive effects of exercise in aiding learning and fighting stress, anxiety, depression, ADHD, addiction, hormonal changes- both PMS and menopause, and aging.
It’s a very good book overall, but somewhat repetitive since it repeats the findings for each condition discussed.